Last Night we got a special Valentine’s Desperation Day episode of How I Met Your Mother and I have to say it was quite wonderful. Marshall was still in Minnesota, Lily was in New York missing him, Ted and Zoey were trying to figure out how to start their relationship, and Robin and Barney were, well acting like Robin and Barney. Not only did the episode seem to tie up Marshall’s storyline about losing his father, it also felt like HIMYM has really risen above its shaky first half from this season. I may have said this before but I feel like this season has been about growing up because from what I watched last night, pretty much all of our characters have grown a lot in the past 2-3 years.
Let’s start with Robin. She was the one who was taking a backseat to Valentine ’s Day this year. She and a couple of her friends from work had decided to protest the holiday by wearing purple. Her friends were really weird and just as desperate as Barney knows they would be. However, as sad as Robin was to be single again on Valentine’s Day, she still rose above it all and didn’t do anything childish or crazy. Instead she helped out Barney because she knew it would make him happy.
Barney has grown up a lot in the past couple of years as well. Yes he is still a childish playboy, and who didn’t die of laughter during his spot on impersonations of the “Predator.” His clicking noises he was making to annoy Robin? Legen-wait for it—dary. It was great to see him still act like his old self yet allow himself to be open to the idea that maybe he liked someone who wasn’t “desperate” on the day before Valentine’s day. That someone was Robin’s co-worker named Nora (Nazanin Boniadi of General Hospital) and I have to say, she had a lot of chemistry with Barney. I am glad that she can keep up with him and still put him in his place. It was nice to see Robin notice this and notice that Barney had a crush and then set them up on a laser-tag date on….thats right, Valentine’s Day. I wouldn’t mind seeing Barney in a committed relationship again. However I don’t want it to last forever, let it last long enough to help him grow up some more and maybe have Nora help him with meeting his dad and all that stuff, but in the end, he needs to choose Robin.
I still am hesitant about Ted and Zoey, mainly because we all know she can’t be the mother. However, it was nice to see Ted in another relationship as opposed to being single for nearly two seasons. It was funny watching these two navigate the waters of this new relationship. I was not in the least bit surprised when Ted brought the overnight bag; he jumps the gun in relationships all the time. However, I did not see him running away from the relationship like he did after Zoey told him that she saw them together for years to come. It was funny to see him run off to Minnesota to stay with Marshall.
Marshall and Lily have really taken this show over this second half of the season. Marshall’s storyline about losing his dad ended up working really working out beautifully for this show. Marshall had such a close relationship with his father and I am glad that Carter and Bays left him in Minnesota for a couple of episodes to show how hard it is to move on when you’ve lost a parent. Last week we saw him and his brother both helping out his mother but this week we saw that he had reverted back to his old teenage self, leaning on his mom to take care of him. So Lily comes because she misses her Marshall; poor girl had to resort to using a body pillow to keep her company (props to TPTB for making that body pillow work so well.) When she gets there, she sees that Marshall, and later Ted, is abusing his mom’s kindness and she tells him that she is going back home and that she wants him to go with her. Marshall says he can’t because his mom needs him, even though that’s not true anymore.
Marshall and Ted then sit there, playing video games, when Marshall finally admits that he misses his Dad. It’s the first time we’ve seen Marshall really talk about his father’s death. The conversation feels so authentic and real and Jason Segal acts the scene so well that I am starting to think he and Alyson Hannigan are the ones really leading this show now. Marshall realizes that, even though his Dad is gone, he will soon learn to see the road ahead, as evidence of making home to NYC through that snowstorm, and the help of his Dad’s ghost (btw, thanks himym for making me cry YET again this season, what are we up to 4 times now?)
How I Met Your Mother has really come into its own again and who would have thought it would have been a tragic storyline about losing a parent to jump start it back into goodness again? But hey if it works, don’t try and stop it. I love how this show has its old charm back and that they are not trying too hard to be funny. I love that they are just letting these actors take back the show. It seems like we now have quite a few new storylines to lead us through the end of this season and I for one couldn’t be more excited!